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Tuesday’s Papers: Finnish Fighter Dies in Ukraine, Presidential Polling, and Tampere’s Real Estate Market

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Tampere property is difficult to sell at the moment.

All the newspapers cover the death of a Finnish volunteer in Ukraine, but Helsingin Sanomat was first with the news after speaking with Tiina Soini from the Nordic Combat Medics’ group, which is active in Ukraine.

The paper reported that a man aged under 30 has died in eastern Ukraine, after travelling from Finland and serving for more than a year in a combat medics’ unit and as a soldier at the front.

The man had arrived in Ukraine soon after the Russian assault began in February 2022, and was one of the longest-serving Finnish volunteers in the conflict.

He had served with a unit of Finns evacuating soldiers and civilians from the hottest conflict zones, and had been in Bakhmut when fighting there was at its fiercest.

His family have requested his identity not to be published, and asked for privacy while they grieve.

Pekka’s presidential pace-setting

Ilta-Sanomat has another poll on next year’s presidential election, and it is good news for the early front-runnerPekka Haavisto (Green).

The election will go to a second round, unless one candidate secures more than 50 percent of the vote in the first round. IS asked respondents about several different second-round matchups, and found that Haavisto won against all his likely opponents.

Bank of Finland governor Olli Rehn (Cen) and foreign policy expert Mika Aaltola did best in the poll, both securing the support of 35 percent of respondents. Neither has declared their candidacy yet.

Finns Party figurehead Jussi Halla-aho (25 percent) did slightly better than outgoing SDP Prime Minister Sanna Marin (24 percent).

Haavisto was preferred by more than fifty percent of respondents in all possible matchups except that with political newcomer Aaltola, in which the split was 49-35.

IS also has a story on Aaltola’s latest column in the Apu magazine, which suggests Finland needs a “defensive corridor” along the eastern border. This would not just be a fence, according to Aaltola, but a zone where the economy and vitality of communities close to Russia was maintained and improved.

Improved economies and infrastructure would offer another level of defence against Russia, after the collapse of cross-border trade and tourism left many places in eastern Finland struggling financially.

Investing in those areas, along with Åland and northern Finland, was a national security issue, according to Aaltola.

Tampere housing glut

Aamulehti has a look at the housing market and, for sellers, it’s not great news. Last year the Oikotie website had some 40 percent more properties for sale in April this year than April the year before.

New-build properties are especially common at the moment, according to AL. Some 15 of those properties had asking prices of more than a million euros, and according to building trade figures, the supply of new apartments has now clearly outstripped demand.

The supply is expected to continue to grow this year, before declining next year as projects are finished. Few new constructions are starting in the city.

Smaller apartments are the most difficult to sell at the moment, as investors have largely withdrawn from the market and are unlikely to return while interest rates remain above the 2-2.5 percent mark.

Source: Yle News

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